'Puzzle' is Well Made, but a Few Pieces are Missing

Based on the film Rompecabezas, Puzzle is one of those little-known independent films that sneaks into theaters with little to no fanfare, although the fact that it is being promoted “from the producer of Little Miss Sunshine” should help it get noticed somewhat. Puzzle is a quiet, little film about a woman who discovers that jigsaw puzzles are the key to changing her life. While the subject matter doesn’t sound all that exciting, the film really isn’t about puzzles but instead about one finding their voice, or so it appears. It’s also a message film that has its own agenda expecting the audience to agree with the choices of the main character and applaud her “brave” behavior. Frankly, it just feels manipulative.

Directed by Marc Turtletaub, Puzzle’s most impactful scene comes within the first few minutes. We see Agnes (Kelly MacDonald) cleaning up the house and they decorating it for a birthday party. Then we see her serving appetizers while being ignored by the guests. …

Second Season of New Mickey Shorts to Air Next Week

The "New" Mickey and friends show up for a second season on the Disney Channel. (Disney)
While Disney purists are still having trouble making peace with Mickey’s new look in the all-new Mickey Mouse shorts that appear regularly on the Disney Channel, the cartoons are hit with just about everyone else. Since their debut on June 2013, the series has reached over 100 million viewers in America and is shown in 160 countries and dubbed in 33 different languages!
Season two of the multiple Emmy and Annie Award-winning comedy will debut on Friday, April 11 at 9:00 p.m. (ET/PT) on the Disney Channel and will be available on watch on Disney.com and iTunes the day after their linear premiere.

Like the first season, season two view feature Mickey and the gang in a variety locales around the globe including Spain, Holland, India and even outer space. In the San Francisco-set season opener, Cable Car Chaos, Mickey and Minnie must stop a runaway cable car as it careens through the city's famous streets. Other new episodes include Fire Escape, where Mickey attempts to rescue Minnie from her burning apartment building, Eau de Minnie, in which Minnie's new perfume enchants an entire city and The Boiler Room, where Mickey must face a monster living in the basement of Minnie's apartment.

So, who is responsible for these adventures? Paul Rudish (Star Wars: Clone Wars, Dexter's Laboratory) is the executive producer and director. Aaron Springer (SpongeBob SquarePants, Gravity Falls) and Clay Morrow (Dexter's Laboratory, The Powerpuff Girls) are directors, and Emmy Award-winner Joseph Holt (Sym-Bionic Titan) is the art director. The series is produced under the supervision of senior vice presidents Eric Coleman and Lisa Salamone at Disney Television Animation.

The end result is a mashup of the early Mickey cartoons and the more modern fare found on the Cartoon Network. Mickey is shown as less, “Hi-ya pal!” and the more rambunctious attitude of yesteryear. Although geared for kids ages 6-14, the shorts appeal to all ages. Some more successfully than others. Personally, I like the “new” Mickey and friends, but I prefer the old Goofy. What do you think? 


promote my blog